July 1, 2014 Last Updated 8:11 am

Updates and deletions: The Huffington Post Newsstand app goes universal; Salt Lake Tribune drops NYT columnists

Flipboard, Mag+, Aquafadas, Magzter and The Economist among those issuing performance enhancement and bug fix updates to their iPhone, iPad apps

There is a definite trend among publishers to get their digital editions on as many devices as possible and one move many are making is to update their iPad Newsstand apps and add iPhone support. Many publishers, though, want to take shortcuts and so simply offer their tablet editions for smartphone users. The result is a terribly hard to read digital edition.

HuffPost-iPhone5-lgThe alternative, of course, is creating a smartphone edition that is designed specifically for reading on that device. One of the first to do this was the British Journal of Photography that used the Mag+ platform to launch an attractive, and separate iPhone edition almost two years ago.

This is the direction AOL’s The Huffington Post has gone in their update for Huffington – creating a new digital edition designed specifically for the iPhone, though still making their Apple Newsstand app universal.

The result is far superior to many iPhone publications, and one that is very readable.

I’m not a big fan of reading books and magazines on my iPhone, though I know plenty of people who do this, and they will find the digital edition here among their favorites (and the digital magazines are free, as well).

Among the other apps updated today is the previewer app from the digital publishing platform Aquafadas – their Aquafadas Viewer update brings the app to version 3.4 and fixes some bugs.

Another preview app, the Mag+ Reviewer iOS app, was also updated this morning. The update improves downloads for larger files on slower connections.

seo_cw_productMagzter has also updated its digital newsstand app, Magzter – Magazine & Book Store – bringing the app to version 3.1.4. The app description says the update offers “magazine reader enhancements” though they do not mention what these might be.

Also: Flipboard’s iOS app app, Flipboard: Your Social News Magazine, has been updated to fix some bugs.

Finally, The Economist for iPad has been updated once again as the publisher continues to deal with crash issues. This is the 11th update that has attempted to deal with bug issues following the release of iOS 7.

NYTOpinion-iPhone5-lgThe Washington Post reported late yesterday afternoon that the struggling Salt Lake Tribune has dropped the columns distributed by the New York Times News Service – these would include the columns from Paul Krugman and others. The reasons stated is economic: the columns cost the paper $40,000 per year.

The paper finds itself in a tough situation as it is part of a joint operating agreement with the Deseret News where it receives a smaller share of the combined profits, the result of a renegotiated agreement.

There is more to the story here, of course, so you will want to get the background from the Erik Wemple story and the background story he links to.

But as papers like the NYT begin to create more news apps, such as its recently released NYT Opinion, the paper becomes even more of a national paper. As a result, do local newspapers really need to pay to duplicate the content coming from the NYT such as its columnists?

If a local editor has to choose between duplicating the content of a national newspaper with popular mobile apps and paying for locally generated content one would guess that many will choose to get up their newsroom staffs, right?

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